After yesterday's devotional, David Smith sent the following miraculous story and gave permission to share it.
"My father, while he was a missionary in Africa, had a similar experience when he had finally been granted permission from the then British Commonwealth to open a mission in Kenya. It had been suggested by the other missions for him to go to the Vetendi area in southern Kenya (today they are called Kuria). He set out, traveling by compass because there were no roads into the area.
"My Mother and two older siblings were traveling with him and it started to rain. The dirt in that area is volcanic ash and becomes like gumbo when it is wet so they stopped and set up camp.
"They ate their meal under the flap of the tent on an old round card table which had worn out rivets at each of the four legs. I remember the table from my own youth and remember that we had to hold the legs of the table between our own legs to prevent the table from swinging away from us as we were trying to eat. They did not set up their cots that night, they simply rolled out their sleeping rolls and went to sleep on the floor of the tent.
"Two animals awakened them in the earlier hours of the evening-an hyena trying to get into the food box which daddy chased off and a lion roaring in the distance which they listed to as they returned to sleep.
"At about three in the morning they were awakened by the feeling of the tent floor rising and falling to the sound of swishing outside the tent. Daddy got up and got his rifle and went to the door of the tent. The rain had stopped and the moon was shining brightly so he could see a long distance in front of the tent. They were camped on the edge of a forest, so daddy went to the edge of the tent and saw about twenty five yard from the tent a herd of about fifteen elephant. "When he saw him they charged him immediately. He said that when that happened it seemed that everything went into slow motion and he thought, 'I have only five rounds of ammunition in this rifle, and if I kill one elephant with each bullet there will still be the rest of the herd to continue the charge.'
"He stepped backwards and said, 'Lord, help me.' As he stepped back he bumped into the table on which they had eaten that evening now having all the cooking pots and pans stacked on it. It was leaning in his direction so when he bumped into it, it shifted away, and with the weight of the pots and pans, overturned dumping them all on the ground. At the sound of the crashing pots and pans, the elephants stopped abruptly and ran off through the trees overturning trees as big as 6 inches in diameter.
"Later when speaking to an ivory hunter he was told that the only thing that would have caused them to run was that kind of noise. Daddy didn't know that but God did, and he overturned all the pots and pans on the ground.
"When Daddy returned, he was speaking in a church in western Pennsylvania, and one of the parishioners of that church invited my parents to spend the night in their home. They accepted the invitation, and while they were eating the evening meal the lady asked Daddy if they had had a time when they were in grave danger while they were on the field. "My father replied that he was sure that he had been in dangerous situations many times.
"She responded that when she was washing windows on one evening she was at the top of her step ladder, and the Lord spoke to her and told her to pray for Robert Smith in Africa. She said that when she told the Lord that she would do that as soon as she finished washing that window, the Lord told her she didn't have that much time. She stopped immediately and knelt at the bottom of the ladder and poured out her heart to the lord on behalf of my daddy until the burden was lifted.
"She said that it was such an impressive experience she had marked it on her calendar, so she went to get her calendar. While she did that, Daddy got out his daily journal and when the date was shown, he went to the same date but at three in the morning in Kenya it was 5 o'clock the previous day in Pennsylvania, so he turned back one page and there was this story.
"When an African Pastor was told a similar story about a deliverance from elephants by another missionary his response was, 'Oh yes, elephants always obey God's commands at once; it is only people who argue with God about whether his commands are the right thing to do.'
"God told the elephants that night that two people were being obedient to His commands: daddy and mother going to a potential mission station and a woman in Western Pennsylvania interceding for my father in his moment of desperation and said, 'Run the other way.' and they did."
"Yours, LORD, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor, for everything in heaven and earth is yours....you are the ruler of all things" (1 Chron. 29:11, 12).